Disclaimer: Kingdom Hearts belongs to SquareEnix and Disney, and not to me. This fan fiction has not been written for profit and no money was made off of it. The idea, however, is mine, and I would appreciate it if you didn't steal it.
Warning: This story is a yaoi, folks. That means it contains graphic sex between two (HOT) males. If you don't like it, don't read it. Flames will be ignored, so don't waste either of our time with them.
Summary: LxC, one-shot, Leon's POV. Sometimes, you have to slow down to see what you have.
Hello! This story was written for Uzumaki's fan fiction contest. I never intended for it to be posted, but I was convinced that it should be. So, here it is. I was really serious when I wrote this, so please be kind. It is a one-shot, so don't go looking for another chapter, cause there won't be one, kiddies!
It takes awhile for the morning sun to annoy me enough to wake me, but eventually I succumb to the inevitability of consciousness. I bury my head in my pillow for a second before glancing up at my clock to see what time it is. I frown; it is eight forty-seven, two hours and seventeen minutes later then I usually awake. I'm about to climb out of bed, but then I remember why I didn't set my alarm last night. It's my day off.
Not only is it my day off, but also my live-in boyfriend's, Cloud. We both have been so busy these past few months; As a photographer, I've had several commissions that demanded much of my time, five weddings, two proms and a couple fashion shows...and this is on top of my normal work for a popular travel magazine. Cloud had also been busy; he's a successful Broadway play director on the brink of worldwide recognition. As such, we have had little time to see each other, and I think both of us are feeling the effects.
A week or so ago, Cloud suggested we both take the same day off, unplug the phone and spend some quality time together. It seemed a good idea to me, so plans were made; plans, which I was sure, would not be followed to the letter. Cloud never could follow a schedule unless it involved work. I'm sure he has already forgotten what we were going to do.
I roll over to reach for my boyfriend, finding it strange that he isn't already sprawled ungracefully across me like he is almost every morning. Cloud sleeps rather rough and unless I keep a firm grip on him at night, it's possible to wake up bruised or on the floor. For this reason I decided on decorating the room in a Japanese style with a bed that was little more then a mattress on a low platform. That way neither of us had far to fall in the event Cloud manages to escape me at night.
My hand brushes against cool sheets- no Cloud. I am more then a little miffed, usually I am the first one awake, and I have a little time to watch Cloud sleep. However these past few days he has been waking up before me, much like he did when we first started dating. At that time he was a terrible insomniac, sometimes not sleeping for days at a time, and when he did, it was only for a few hours. After a time, however, this stopped, and neither one of us gave it another thought. Cloud was sleeping well (maybe a little too well), and that was enough for us.
I stifle a sigh; my boyfriend can be such an unromantic bastard at times. Then again, not only is this untrue, but it is like the pot calling the kettle black, I know I myself can be cold at times. It was worse before Cloud came along; I never really spoke to anyone, and was about as good as company as a dead rat... or so I've been told.
While I lay there grumbling to myself about how we have planned for this day and already Cloud is ruining it, a sweet smell wafts into the bedroom of the large apartment we share, and I forget all about my previous thoughts. Climbing out of bed, I saunter into the kitchen where I spot my boyfriend sliding the last of three pancakes onto a plate. From the aroma, I know that they can only be strawberry. A glance at the counter near the sink confirms my assumptions; there is a small, half empty bowl of fresh strawberries on it and a knife next to them.
Cloud looks over at me as I enter our kitchen. His expression softens for a moment and he turns back to the sink, dropping the pan he used into it and picking up the knife and a strawberry. I take a moment to let my gaze run over his slim, yet muscular build. He is clad in a loose pair of my pajama bottoms and nothing else. I don't really mind, especially when they sit low on his hips like they do, but he normally only does this when I am away on business.
"Good morning." His voice is soft, quiet and oddly calming. No matter what I am feeling it is always soothing... Makes it hard to argue with him, not that we argue much. Cloud has to be one of the most agreeable people I have ever met.
I nod at Cloud's back, then sit in a chair at the table. There is a tray sitting on it in front of me, and on top of that was a plate of pancakes, knife, fork and a small bud vase holding a tiny, half bloomed red rose. Lifting an eyebrow, I turn toward Cloud who comes toward the table with half a strawberry that is carefully carved and arranged to look like a small flower of some sort. Cloud places it on the stack of pancakes before slowly drizzling golden brown syrup over them.
"Cloud, why-mmmph!" I don't get to finish my question because Cloud chooses that moment to shove the other half of the strawberry into my mouth. I glare up at him a moment while I chew thoughtfully on the sweet fruit. Cloud did that just to keep me from asking my question, I'm sure of it.
"I wanted to bring you breakfast in bed, but you woke up too early." Cloud says pointedly, as if I had ruined his day. I narrow my eyes at that.
"Do you want me to go back to bed?"
Cloud rolls his eyes. "The surprise is ruined now, there's no point."
"Well, it's fine. The last time you did that we ended up making a mess. I don't think we ever got the sheets clean." I pick up the fork on the table, only to have my chair pulled back, and Cloud straddle my waist, pulling the fork out of my hand. A soft pair of lips cover my own, and before I can even respond, Cloud pulls back and stares at me with unreadable blue eyes.
"Let's try this again." He says softly. "Good morning."
Cloud says nothing about my lack of response, as usual. I am silently grateful; sometimes I just don't know what to say or do, but with Cloud it's never a big deal. Cloud understands my silent moments, can see through my coldness, read the hidden messages in my seemingly emotionless words. By simple observation and experimentation, Cloud has managed to learn many of the little things that make me happy, my favorite foods, colors, clothing... What to say, and what to do...
It is almost as if Cloud was born just for me.
Maybe that kind of viewpoint is arrogant, but I can't help but think that way. Cloud can see through my every move. Cloud can understand my every word. Where others need me to verbalize everything, Cloud has never needed anything of the sort. It is this trait that made me become so comfortable around the spiky haired blonde, comfortable enough to begin to open up a little. Although I'm sure I still have quite a way to go, he says I have come a long way.
Cloud picks up the plate on the tray and begins to feed me forkfuls of pancakes. I soon find that I have to really concentrate on eating, having Cloud straddling my lap with no shirt and thin pajama bottoms, feeding me breakfast...
Cloud gives me a sort of quick, amused snort before standing and placing the plate in front of me. He goes back over to the counter to where a coffeemaker sits, already full of French vanilla flavored coffee. He has really put a lot of detail into breakfast this morning. The pancakes made with fresh strawberries and the flavored coffee are proof of that. The kitchen also looks like it has been scrubbed clean. The two of us aren't messy by any means, but Cloud has clearly scrubbed every surface and mopped the floor. I think he might have even cleaned the windows, something he would almost never do.
Cloud sets a cup of coffee down on the table, removing the tray and setting the vase down on it. He slides into a chair opposite me and takes a sip of coffee from the cup before sliding it over towards me. It was clear he wanted to share it with me, something we haven't done in ages.
"I was thinking we could start the day off with a morning ride."
There it is, Cloud is changing the plan as I foresaw. We were supposed to spend the morning in bed, but I suppose he forgot all about that, as usual. I look up at Cloud, shrugging. "...Fine."
"With the bikes."
I lift an eyebrow at that. He wants to go for a bike ride? It's fall, and not that warm either. "Are you serious?"
"It's supposed to be a nice day. Humor me." His eyes stare directly into mine; his expression is neither pleading nor demanding. I lower my eyes to look at my half eaten pancakes, and I pick at the decoratively carved strawberry on top.
"Fine. We'll do that then." I look up at him, expecting to see him flash his brightest smile at me like he does when I let him have his way...but instead there is only the contented expression on his face that he has had all morning. I frown in confusion, taking a sip of coffee to hide it. As soon as I put the cup down, Cloud takes it again, and this time he does not push it back. I literally have to pull it away from him when I want another sip. I now remember why we haven't done this in so long. Cloud always hogs the cup, and I almost never get much of whatever is in it.
I finish my breakfast and pull the coffee cup away from Cloud again, frowning at how little he has left for me. I help him straighten up the kitchen, drying the dishes and putting them away before he gets the chance to. He looks at me as if expecting something, and I grow uneasy under his gaze.
"I think we should get ready if we're going to go." I say. I think I catch a flicker of disappointment in his impossibly blue eyes, but it could just be a trick of the light.
I move to head into the room and let him take his shower first, but he grabs my arm lightly, causing me to turn back toward him.
"Take a shower with me." He says, his gentle voice lower then usual. Unable to resist the invitation, I give him a short nod and let him pull me into the bathroom.
Although Cloud and I are alike in many ways, there are very distinct differences in our personalities. Take a good look at the products in our bathroom and you will see what I mean. Cloud prefers bath gel to soap, one of those stupid poof-things instead of a washcloth and insisted on a showerhead with at least seven different sprays...and he will go through all of them in the same shower. Everything he uses; soap, shampoo, deodorant, lotion, even his hair gel, has been carefully selected so the different fragrances compliment each other in a way that is uniquely coordinated. Though I love the way he smells, I only buy what is functional and never give a second thought to its fragrance. Cloud is also attracted to bottles with bright colors or interesting shapes, while I, again, only care about what's inside and how well it works. As long as it smells clean and does what it is supposed to, it's enough for me.
While Cloud turns on the water, I pull off the clothes I had worn to bed; a simple white tank top and pajama bottoms. I don't wear underwear to bed, it only dirties up laundry faster and annoys me when I want to make love with Cloud. Cloud doesn't either, so all I have to do to undress him is slide the pajama bottoms he's wearing off his hips and let gravity pull them to the floor, which I do. I wrap my arms around him and nuzzle him behind his ear, and he turns in my embrace, pulling me into the shower with him.
Cloud has selected the gentlest setting, and the warm water rains down on us like a slow waterfall. Cloud pulls my head down for a kiss, and I can feel him fumbling for the soap and my washcloth which is behind us. The water washes enough of his hair gel out that it falls around his shoulders like molten gold. I pull away and sift my fingers through it, then reach for his shampoo. The sweet smell of vanilla fills the room as I begin to work the shampoo into a thick lather, the way he likes. Cloud is rubbing the now soapy washcloth across my neck and shoulders and it temporarily distracts me from my task. I push him back to rinse the shampoo from his hair and give him room to wash my chest. As soon as the shampoo is fully rinsed out, he closes the distance and reaches behind me to wash my back. It feels nice, really nice, and so I arch into his touch a little, enjoying the feel of his massaging fingers for a while before I pour conditioner into Cloud's hair and comb it through with my fingers.
"Your shampoo and conditioner both smell the same this time." I comment, picking up Cloud's bath gel and poof.
"Maybe you're starting to rub off on me." Cloud's voice becomes teasing. "Soon, everything I use will smell the same... like someone else I know."
"...Whatever." I flick open the bottle and squeeze some of the gel into the poof. It smells like cinnamon and nutmeg. I begin to rub him down and he wriggles under my ministrations like a happy puppy. He pulls close and sighs contentedly into my shoulder, his hands sliding down my body to cup my buttocks. He gives them a firm squeeze and I can't help but close my eyes and moan softly, dropping my head onto his shoulder. Cloud nips at one of my earlobes and then proceeds to finish washing me. When he stands, I finish washing him. After he rinses clean he steps aside to let me move into the spray of water. I reach for my shampoo and he tries to pull it from my hands.
"Let me do it."
"You'll get soap in my eyes, Cloud."
"You don't know that. Let me do it, Leon."
"I want to do it." Thankfully Cloud lets the subject drop, though I know he's sulking behind me. He says nothing as I wash and rinse my hair, but once I'm finished, his arms wrap around me from behind and rub my nipples, and they harden under his touch. Before I can say anything, one of his hands drags down my chest and abdomen to my groin. His fingers slide down my length slowly, teasingly, and my breath hitches when his hand wraps around it firmly, moving to work it into full hardness.
"Cloud..." I half groan in protest, leaning back against him in spite of myself. His only response is to flick a thumb over the head of my penis and bury his face into my shoulder. When I shiver, I feel him smile and then he pumps my member slowly, laying kiss after kiss on my shoulders and neck. I want to touch him, but I can't, not with him behind me like he is. His hand quickens and I meet his rhythm eagerly, growling with frustration when he slows down. He makes an almost inaudible sound of amusement and speeds up again, but he loosens his grip.
"Damn it Cloud..." I hiss through clenched teeth, cursing his playfulness. He begins to hum softly, ignoring my distress completely, the bastard. He presses his hips into my backside, and I can feel how badly he wants me, and by all the gods it makes me even harder. He continues his teasing a little while longer, then tightens his grip on me and quickens his pace, causing me to writhe against him and nearly lose my footing. I am vaguely aware of myself calling his name and I explode into his hand a second later. My legs feel weak, but he holds me up, still humming that same tune. I take a second to get my bearings then turn to push him further against the tiles as I press a heated kiss to his lips. Surprised at my sudden aggression his jaw falls slack giving me the opportunity to taste this morning's coffee that is still on his tongue. I close my hand around his erection and pump him quickly, enjoying the feel of his muscles as they quiver underneath my touch. He cums not too long after I begin, moaning into our kiss. I hold him close, the area between us hot and slick with both of our cum and he looks up at me, his eyes sparkling with mischief. I give him a dry look and pull him back under the warm spray of water.
"You're supposed to do that before you wash, you know." I scold him sternly. The look he gives me is devilish.
"So can I wash your hair now?"
I toss his poof at him and turn to get myself clean.
After an additional ten minutes in the bathroom, I left Cloud brushing his teeth (with a cinnamon toothpaste) and went to pick something to wear for the day.
Our closet is another area to look for differences between us. Cloud's wardrobe is not only smaller then mine but also simpler. His clothes are also a little more colorful then mine; I tend to stick to black, white and gray, while he prefers blues, greens and earth tones. He somehow has more shoes then I do, and many of them still have price tags. Cloud will build an outfit around a pair of shoes, unlike normal people who pick out a pair of shoes to go with their outfit.
I'm still mulling over what to wear when Cloud reaches past me, grabs a pair of black leather pants off of a hanger and walks away, leaving behind an aroma much like fresh baked cookies, the combination of all the products he uses for this month. I raise an eyebrow at him, it's a wonder the two of us haven't put on any weight with him smelling like cookies or fruit or some kind of dessert all of the time. I turn back to the closet to finish the difficult task of deciding what to wear for the day.
I finally decide, ten minutes later, on a pair of gray suede pants with a matching jacket and a white, gray and black button down shirt. It takes another two minutes or so to decide on a pair of shoes, and then I go to look for Cloud, knowing he is already dressed and ready to go. He never takes long getting dressed, he carelessly grabs the first thing he sees and puts it on.
I find him in the living room, sitting in the window seat of the apartment's largest window, wearing a thick, large knit, cream colored turtleneck sweater and the black leather pants he grabbed earlier. He is staring out of the window, the morning sun washing over him, highlighting his golden hair, one bare foot resting on the thick cushion on the window seat, the other on the hardwood floor. He holds a coffee cup lightly in hands tipped with long fingers, and to me he personifies the morning sun itself. I back out of the room to find my digital camera, and then I come back, creeping up on him as to keep from disturbing him and causing him to move.
I manage to get a good two shots of him before he turns to me wide-eyed, nearly dropping his cup in surprise.
"Leon..." He almost whines in protest, and I respond by snapping his picture again. I don't think I will ever be tired of taking pictures of him. He has an almost ethereal beauty to him that makes him seem so unattainable, yet his personality and body language are both so down to earth and genuine...he almost doesn't seem to be real.
"Are you going like that?" I say, indicating his bare feet. He rolls his eyes at me and climbs to those feet, walking past me to go back into the bedroom. I go to retrieve my camera case, I have a feeling there will be some beautiful pictures waiting to go into my portfolio.
A few minutes later, Cloud and I are out riding on our identical bikes, side by side. The day is bright without being blinding and for that I am grateful, it means I don't have to bring all my equipment with me, just my camera itself. It also means Cloud won't cover his face with a pair of shades. Cloud glances at the case slung over my shoulder and then at me.
"Can't you leave that thing at home sometimes?"
I look at him a moment then speed up so I pass him. "...You brought your cell phone."
Cloud catches up to me, looking at the road ahead of us. "You have a point." He says softly. He turns down a street unexpectedly and I have to hurry to keep up.
"Where are we going?" I ask, glancing at him. He gives me a smug look but doesn't answer. He pulls ahead of me, forcing me to follow after him. He's up to something, but I am willing to play his game to see what it is. Leading me through the city swiftly, we come to a quiet street filled with red and gold trees. Cloud climbs off his bike and walks toward them, the leaves raining down around him gently.
"I found this place the last time you went out of town." He says to me, weaving in and out of the trees. "I thought that if we ever wanted to own a house this would be where I would want to live."
I take a look around the quiet street. "The houses are kind of small here." I comment. Cloud rolls his eyes at me and walks further away. The wind blows the leaves around his graceful form and I can't resist taking a picture of him in the crisp autumn setting. He eventually wanders back over, and I take a few close ups of his face before he grabs me by the front of my jacket and pulls me in close for a kiss.
To my utter annoyance, Cloud's cell phone rings, and he looks at me apologetically, then moves away to answer it. From the way he's talking, it must be someone from the theatre...which is no surprise. The conversation drags on to almost ten minutes, and I can feel my eyebrow twitch as what little patience I have is exhausted. I walk behind him, pulling the phone from his hand.
I ignore his protest, putting the phone to my ear and barking, "He'll call you tomorrow, he's off today." I turn the phone off and when Cloud reaches for it, I pull it away and shove it into my jacket's inside pocket. Cloud casts me a withering look but gives up on getting his phone back after a few more attempts to reclaim it. We walk back toward the bikes, and Cloud suddenly grabs the strap on my camera, pulling it off my shoulder and hopping onto his bike to speed away.
"Cloud!" Sometimes, I am amazed at how childish my lover can be. This is clearly revenge for me taking his phone, but I chase after him anyway, it's an expensive camera.
I chase him through the nearly empty streets, Cloud knows how to avoid people and does so nimbly. I'm not so skilled, and so am happy he chooses the less populated streets to ride down.
Neither of us are out of shape, however, Cloud rides much more then I do, so not only does he know his bike better, but his lighter frame and strong legs keep him far ahead of me, and I curse under my breath in frustration.
Thankfully he stops a while later, after turning down a busy street lined with small shops and restaurants. My watch beeps, alerting me to the time. It's noon, and I'm sure my lover is ready for lunch. His internal clock is a thing to marvel. He'll need three alarms to wake up, but when it comes time to eat, he's more accurate then an atomic clock.
"Let's eat here." Cloud points at a restaurant with a brightly painted sign.
"I'm not hungry." I tell him, and he frowns at me and holds my camera out to the side by it's strap. I sigh, rubbing my forehead. "Can we at least find a different restaurant? This one seems..."
"I love this place. I eat here all the time when you're out of town and I don't feel like cooking." Cloud quickly separates his front wheel from the frame and chains everything to a nearby sign. "I want to share this with you... Please?"
Curiosity causes me to nod and allow Cloud to help me chain my bike up. I follow him into the restaurant, lifting an eyebrow at the décor. Old posters, signs, key chains and other memorabilia adorn the walls, strewn about randomly. Waiters and waitresses walk around, smiling cheerfully in red and white striped shirts, carrying sizzling plates of food. A waitress shows us to a booth, and I can see why Cloud likes it here. It's warm and comforting and although it is filled with people, it still seems like we are alone.
"Not so bad, right?"
I look up into Cloud's eyes, they seem to glow in the low light, and I feel like I'm drowning in them. I open the menu to escape.
"So far." I can feel Cloud's eyes on me for a while, and I deliberately ignore him, afraid of the expression that might be in them. After a moment he opens his menu and I risk a glance at him. He's staring at his menu, eyes shaded with what looks like disappointment. I frown, this isn't good.
"Cloud." He looks up, the expression replaced with curiosity and...guilt? My eyebrows narrow, and I put down my menu.
"What's wrong? Did I-"
"Oh, I'm just hungry. I think I'm ready, how about you?"
I frown at his blatant dodge of the subject, and am about to press him for answers- real ones, when the waitress arrives. I listen to Cloud order potato skins for an appetizer, then a hamburger with bacon and cheese with a side of curly fries. I order a BLT with shoestring fries and we both get the same kind of soda. The waitress smiles at us and leaves, and I stare over at Cloud who meets my gaze with that contented expression that is beginning to annoy me. Something about Cloud seems off, and I can't quite put my finger on it. Until I do, it's impossible for me to say anything about it, so I just sit back and listen to Cloud talk about nothing until our food arrives. We eat in silence, and I notice a strangely discontent expression on his face when he thinks I am not looking. I don't realize I'm glaring at him until he looks up at me and his face pales.
"What's wrong?" He asks, his voice sounding a little thin.
This isn't the place to talk about this. I decide to wait until later to question him about what's on his mind. I know I won't get a straight answer from him, I never do, not when it's about him. I still don't know why he does these things. I guess he's still pretty much a mystery to me, even after three years of living together.
"Why don't we drop off the bikes at home and do something you want to do?" Cloud suggests, biting into an extremely curly French fry.
Something I want to do? "Like what?"
Cloud lifts a blond eyebrow. "You tell me."
"You seem to know me better then I do." I mutter, then nearly kick myself at Cloud's hurt expression. "I'll think of something." I say quickly, but that isn't much better. We fall into silence again, finishing off our meal. Cloud pays the bill, even though I protest. We walk out and he unlocks the bikes and puts the front wheels back on both of them and we ride back home. By the time we get there, Cloud's mood has changed, and he even gives me back my camera. I had almost forgotten he still had it.
"So do you know what you want to do?" Cloud asks me when we get in the door. I shake my head at him, and he nods. "Then I'll go get a stew started in the slow cooker for dinner. Let me know when you decide."
"Whatever." The word comes so easily to my lips at times; I say it without even knowing or meaning to sometimes. When he leaves, I go to download the images from my camera to my computer, I use a digital camera when I'm not working, I like the versatility. My customers, however usually want negatives so when I'm working, I use film.
The pictures download in no time, and I look them over, searching for imperfections that may need fixing. The pictures of Cloud staring out of the window this morning are first. Despite them being hastily shot, they are still among the best of the pictures I have taken, I think. Even sitting as still as he was, the picture is very alive.
However, something doesn't seem right.
I frown, trying to find what about the picture is off, but nothing seems to need any fixing. I grow agitated, something is wrong. I click the mouse and look at all the other pictures, particularly the close ups. I have the same feeling about them as I do about the morning picture, but I still can't put my finger on it. After a while, I save the pictures to be dealt with later, and go to find Cloud in the kitchen.
When I walk in, he's pouring water in the slow cooker. I walk over to take a peek inside, and he places the top on it to tease me.
"Decide yet?" He asks smoothly.
"Yeah. Let's go down to the waterfront and take a ride on the ferry. I'm curious on how the river looks today. Might get some good pictures of it."
Cloud sighs, looking up at the ceiling. "How about you leave the camera here?"
"...How about not?"
Cloud looks at me, his expression unreadable...then he bolts for the bedroom as fast as he can.
"Cloud!" I chase after him, thoughts filled of all the evil things my sadistic lover might do to my camera. Thank goodness I downloaded all the pictures already.
When I reach the bedroom Cloud already has my camera in hand. I lunge for him and he dodges out of my hands, eyes sparkling with pleasure. I manage to tackle him and we go sprawling onto the bed. Cloud holds the camera out of my reach while I wriggle around trying to grab it. We roll around on the bed and I stop trying to get the camera, and start trying to pin Cloud. This task is much easier since Cloud is already underneath me.
I manage to get a hold on him so he can't move, but he still has my camera out of my reach. I glare at him, then freeze at his expression.
Cloud's face is flushed from our activities, lips parted and his breath is heavy. His eyes are still sparkling and...
Dear gods, he's absolutely beautiful. I can feel my body heating with desire, but I cast him a cool gaze.
"Give me my camera, Cloud."
"Promise me you'll leave it at home." Cloud's voice is low, with the same tone he used when he asked me to join him in the shower... and again, I cannot resist.
"Fine. Just give me my-" Cloud lifts up and kisses me, cutting off my command. He rolls us over so he is the one on top and his kiss becomes fiercer, more desperate. I loosen my grip on him and he works his hands free, one of them burying in my hair. After a while, he pulls away, dropping my camera into my hands. I look at it for a moment, I have once again forgotten about it.
"Let's get going." Cloud says, his tone amused. I stand up and take a look at my appearance, and shake my head at him.
"I need to change. I'm all rumpled after your little game." I try to sound angry, but fail miserably. Cloud lifts an eyebrow at me and shakes his head. He can see right through me, as usual. I don't know why I bother.
"Sometimes, Leon, I worry about you..." Cloud leaves me to change on that. I cast a dry look to his back, even though I know he can't see it.
I only take ten minutes to change, this time I'm in black leather pants and a simple red mock turtleneck sweater. When I turn around, Cloud comes back into the room with a brush, and he sits me down in a chair.
"What are you doing?" I ask, when I feel his fingers in my hair.
"What do you think? I'm going to fix your hair for you." Cloud runs the brush through my hair quickly, and I want to lean back into it. Cloud has brushed my hair for me before, and every time he does I never want him to stop. He finishes all too soon, placing the brush down and stepping away. "Ready now?" His voice is teasing again, and I ignore it, standing to stride past him and grab one of my leather jackets. When he isn't looking I drop one of my smaller digital cameras inside a pocket. He only told me to leave that one camera, not all of them. I do have about five of them. Once I'm finished, we leave, taking my black Sunfire down to the waterfront. The ride is a quiet one, and Cloud watches me the whole time, looking as if he wants to say something, but not sure how to bring it up. I'm not sure either, and so I say nothing, concentrating on the road ahead.
Cloud hops out of the car as soon as it stops, walking swiftly over to the rail that keeps the public from jumping into the river below, and leans over it, into the wind. After I park, I slip my small camera out of my pocket and take a quick picture. I put it away before he turns to me, blue eyes dancing with excitement. Cloud loves the water, he always has.
"You're a little too happy, Cloud. You're acting like a little kid going for his first ride." I say, leaning my back against the rail.
"I love the water." He says turning back to gaze at the river. "I think I may have lived in the ocean sometime... in a past life, maybe."
I raise an eyebrow at him. "It would explain some things." Cloud looks at me strangely, and I look away, trying to think of something kind to say. "It would have been a happy life for you, if something like past lives truly exist."
"You're so unromantic." Cloud says, heaving a dramatic sigh he must have learned from the actors he works with. "But even so, I doubt I was very happy."
"No? Why not?" I ask, genuinely curious. Cloud gives me a slight smile and steps over to me, wrapping his arms around my waist and pulling close.
"Because I didn't have you with me..." He murmurs, tilting his head up to press his lips to mine.
"Eeeeww! Go get a room somewhere!"
I push Cloud to the side, pissed, ready to tell off the asshole that spoke before realizing who it is.
"Why are you guys here?" I demand of the four young men smirking at us.
"Well, isn't it obvious? I'm making sure you don't do illicit things to my boss in public." replies one with silver hair and self-righteous aqua green eyes.
"Riku! Don't be rude!" Says the person nearest to him. He turns eyes remarkably like Cloud's on me. "We came to take a ride on the ferry. It's good to see you guys here."
"...Likewise, Sora." I say, though it is a bold faced lie. I'm actually annoyed that they're here, Cloud will probably want to talk to them. I look at the other two. "You guys too?"
"Yeah, me 'an Tidus needed a little of that 'quality time', ya?" Says one, a redhead with a strange hairstyle. His name is Wakka, I believe.
I actually don't really care. "...Whatever."
Cloud shakes his head at me. "Well, since we're all here, maybe we should ride together."
I knew he was going to do this, but I glare at Cloud anyway. This is supposed to be our day, the one we spent together, alone. My anger, however, goes unnoticed. Sora and Tidus get excited, and everyone readily agrees before I can object.
I keep my comments to myself, I'm not on what you may call 'friendly terms' with anyone, save maybe Sora. He and Riku both work with Cloud regularly; Riku is an actor and Sora designs the costumes and does makeup. As for Wakka and Tidus, I don't know much about them past their names. I do know that they are the playwrights for the new play Cloud is directing, but that's about it. They are Cloud's friends, and it is because of that fact that I put up with them.
We end up having the ferry all to ourselves, I guess no one else is foolish enough to be near water in autumn. It may be sunny, but it is still fairly cold. I sit on one of the molded plastic chairs on the outside deck, watching Sora gesture excitedly to Cloud as he tries to tell him about something. Tidus is laughing in between them, but my eyes stay on Cloud. I still have the feeling something is wrong. Cloud has on his content expression, and it is annoying me to no end because I just know he is anything but content and I can't figure out what is wrong with him.
Riku and Wakka come over to where I am and sit on either side of me. Though I am annoyed, I keep my face an impassive mask. They follow my gaze for a moment, then to my irritation, they try to start a conversation with me.
"Cloud must have the patience of a saint, being able to deal with both Sora and Tidus at the same time." Riku sighs, shaking his head.
I find myself nodding at that, despite myself. Those two certainly did look pretty lively. "Cloud likes people." I shrug.
"Now that's an understatement." Wakka laughs from his place on my right. "When we all met last week to discuss the changes in the script, he brought so many sweets I think I put on ten pounds that night alone!"
"Yes, and they were all homemade." Riku turns to me, wide eyed. "It must have taken forever to do all that!"
"He made all that?" Wakka exclaims, wide-eyed. "Wow."
I frown at that. I don't remember any of this, which means he had to have done it when I was asleep because we pretty much keep the same hours when I am in town. Him doing this at night means he isn't sleeping at all, which means...
"Eh, lucky you, having someone who likes to take care of people." Riku says, eyeing me. "Sora tries, but..." Riku shudders involuntarily. "He's, um, a little clumsy."
"I don't even want to think about Tidus in the kitchen." Wakka groans. "I'm bad enough, but he is a disaster."
They both sigh and I slip into uneasy thoughts. Cloud not sleeping at night, wearing my pajamas and cooking a lot...
He's acting like he does when I go away...and I haven't gone anywhere for a while.
"I wonder how he does it."
Riku's voice interrupts my thoughts. I glance over at him, wondering the same thing myself.
"Patience of a saint, like you said, Riku." Wakka replies.
"Still, it's gotta be exhausting." Riku leans his head back. "But at least he has someone to take care of him sometimes." Riku gives me a strange look, and I narrow my eyes at him. Is he trying to imply something? Before I can ask him, Sora bounds over, pulling Riku to his feet and dragging him over to the railing. Tidus motions for Wakka to join him and soon, I am left alone. I watch Cloud as he watches them, trying to place the expression on his face. After a while he looks over at me, meeting my gaze with questioning eyes. I just keep staring at him and he eventually walks over, sitting next to me.
"That's my question." I reply, reaching out a hand to brush across his face. He leans into my touch, his eyes drifting closed for a second, and he places a hand over mine.
"There's nothing wrong. I'm having a good time." He opens his eyes to look at me. "Are you upset that I invited them?"
Yes, but I'm not going to say so. "It's fine." Cloud stands and pulls me to my feet.
"Then stop being anti-social and come over to the railing with us."
I frown at how Cloud has managed to get the conversation off of himself, but let it drop. This isn't the place to talk about it, anyway.
Not to mention I still have no idea on how to approach this. Every time I try, Cloud manages to evade the subject. I'll keep trying, however. He means too much to me for me not to.
The ferry slowly sails back around to the docks, and Cloud and I say our goodbyes to Sora, Riku, Tidus and Wakka. Riku and Wakka give me secret smiles, and it makes me wonder again what they are up to. I don't get very long to ponder this, Cloud faces me and tugs on the front of my jacket, his eyes playful.
"Where?" I ask, but he just shakes his head and pulls me along after him. "Can't we take the car?" There are a few fast moving clouds sweeping the sky, and I don't like the look of them.
"It's not far, come on."
I follow after him, grumbling. He ignores it, like he always does, and soon we arrive on a quiet street paved with brick. Small, family owned shops dot the area. I haven't seen something like this in a while, and so I reach for my camera, but Cloud pulls me into a bookstore. It's tiny and filled with more books then it can comfortably hold, yet it has a comfortable feel. A tan, white and black cat regards me lazily from a low bookshelf, and Cloud pets him and maneuvers around to the back of the store.
"What are you looking for?" I ask as I join him.
"Something we can read together." Cloud says simply, selecting a book. "I think it would be nice to do that after dinner, don't you?"
The thought of Cloud and I curled up together to read a book is a very nice idea, and I take back my earlier comment on Cloud being unromantic.
"Yeah." I reply lightly. "It sounds good to me."
"Good." Cloud pays for the book and we leave. I look up at the sky, noticing that dark clouds have now covered the sky, and they didn't look friendly.
"Cloud, I think we should head back to the car before it-"
Thunder crashes loudly, cutting me off and a heavy downpour starts. I curse under my breath, and Cloud chuckles at me. I fail to see what is so amusing, so I glare at him.
"I guess we're going to end up reading earlier then expected." He says, looking up at the rain clouds.
"Stay here, I'll go get the car." I mutter.
"No, I'll come with you."
I shake my head. "There's no reason for us both to get wet."
"We have to go home now anyway." Cloud says matter-of-factly. "I might as well."
I give in with a sigh, then grab the bag with the book out of my stubborn lover's hands and tuck it into my jacket where it would be safe from the weather. Cloud grabs my hand and the two of us sprint back to the car. It really isn't that far away, but in the pouring rain it might as well have been. We get to the car soaked, and I am more then a little upset. At least I'm not wearing my suede outfit. That would have been a disaster. Cloud looks amused at my grumbling, and I give him a death glare that only makes him smirk at me. He'll get his later. Right now I just want us to get into some dry clothes before we get ill.
I drive home faster then I probably should have, and Cloud gets his keys ready when I park. It's raining even harder when we leave the car to run into the apartment building. Once inside our apartment, Cloud goes into the bathroom while I begin to pull off my wet jacket and boots. I hang my dripping jacket in the hall, and Cloud comes back, draping a towel over my head. I thank him and move into the bedroom to change. Cloud goes into the kitchen, muttering something about tea.
The rest of the day is most likely ruined; it is unlikely that it will clear up so Cloud and I can go out again, so I get into my pajamas and grab my slim black portfolio, wandering into the living room to look out the window at the rain. As I sit in the window seat, I can hear Cloud moving around; he is heading into the bedroom to change, I hope. He doesn't worry about himself enough, I guess it's one of those traits we share, because I'm guilty of the same thing. That and we both don't normally talk about what's bothering us, or what's on our minds. Cloud can read me like an open book, but I'm different. I can't do what he does, and unless he says something, I won't even know something is wrong.
I flip through my portfolio, looking at the record of my best work, which could double as a diary of the relationship Cloud and I have. Almost all of the pictures have him in it, and by almost I mean maybe five of them out of a good eighty don't have him in them somewhere. Although they don't feature him, they do involve him in some way, two of them are of the theatre where he works, one is of the amazing cheesecake he bakes and the last two are of the place in which I first met him, a small, but lively little dance club.
I flip through the first few pictures, sliding my hand down what I consider the absolute best of all the pictures I have ever taken.
It's of Cloud, of course, taken about fifteen minutes after he had made love to me. His naked form is wrapped loosely in the white, queen-sized sheets from our bed. He is halfway facing me, his beautiful blue eyes as wide and as innocent as a boy's. His expression was full of love and happiness, and he was smiling so sweetly as me...as if I was the most wonderful thing in the world. Most people I show this portfolio to stop at this one picture and hire me on the spot.
But nothing I have ever done has ever come close to this shot, nothing. The shot from this morning may be second, but it still can't even hope to compete with this. I suddenly wonder why that is. There should have been many pictures close to this one, but here isn't. I flip through the next few pictures, holding my thumb to my lips in thought. The pictures after my best remind me of the ones I took today; they are good, but something about Cloud is off. Something just isn't right. I mull over it a while, thinking about the days events.
There is something wrong with Cloud, and it seems that something has been wrong for quite some time. He's acting strange, doing things that he only does when I'm away, like not sleeping, and losing himself in cooking. He gives me that contented look, but when was the last time I heard him laugh? When was the last time I saw him smile?
Oh my God...that's it. I flip back through my pictures, mentally kicking myself for not noticing. Cloud had eventually stopped smiling, and a shadow had fallen over his eyes. The clear, easy to read eyes have become guarded, hiding their true emotions from the camera, from me. I wonder how I could have missed something like this. However, that's not what is most important. What's important is figuring out how can I fix this. What is wrong, and how do I get him to tell me?
I'm thinking so hard, that when Cloud wraps a blanket around me I don't notice right away. He hands me a steaming cup of tea, another blanket tucked under his arm. He then joins me in the large window seat, wrapping up in his blanket and looking out of the window. We sip the tea in silence, Cloud is watching the rain as it hits the window, and I watch Cloud. He's in nothing but a pair of my pajama bottoms again, and I sigh softly, exasperated. He notices and turns toward me, giving me that look again. That damn look of contentment that I now know is false. I think I'm mostly annoyed because I can't remember when he stopped smiling and started with this look. I'm sick of it, and now is finally the time for us to talk.
"So what's really wrong with you Cloud?" I ask, placing my portfolio on the floor out of the way. Cloud buries deeper into his blanket, turning to the window again.
"There's nothing wrong, Leon. I had a good time today."
"I don't mean just today. Cloud, your not sleeping again."
"I've always had sleeping problems, Leon. You know this." Cloud says dismissively.
"Yes, and it is usually stress related."
"Key word: usually. There is nothing wrong. You're just being paranoid."
We fall into a chilly silence, and I stare at Cloud as he tries to avoid my eyes. This is so frustrating. How can I get him to open up to me? He's done everything for me, helped me through so much. I want to do the same for him, but I don't know how... I can't even openly tell him how I feel... How can I expect to be able to help him through this when I can't even do that?
I want him to be able to sleep again. I want to see him smile, hear him laugh...
To have that...I would do the impossible...and more. If I can't tell him, maybe I can show him...
I climb to my feet, walking away to put my cup in the kitchen sink. Cloud doesn't move from his spot, which is good. I don't want him to go anywhere for a while. Not until I have the chance to prepare for what I want to do.
I slip into the bedroom unseen, not a difficult feat since Cloud is suddenly very interested in the rain right now. I rummage through the cabinet of the nightstand near the bed, where Cloud keeps a large variety of scented oils, creams and lotions. As I reach inside, I begin to feel a little nervous, after all, I've never done anything like this before. Usually it is Cloud who initiates everything between us, and it is always Cloud who makes love to me. I've never attempted to be dominant. I'm not completely sure why. It could be that I'm unsure of how to proceed, or that I am... afraid...of disappointing Cloud. I grab the bottle of lavender and chamomile scented oil, it is the only oil in a glass bottle. Cloud usually reserves this one for holidays, but I think now is an appropriate time to use it. I saunter back into the living room, setting the oil on the floor near him, and sitting back in my place in the window seat on the opposite side of Cloud. He glances at me quickly, his brow scrunching questioningly.
"What are you doing?" He asks.
"Trying to figure out what is wrong with you, why you can't tell me what's going on." I answer. He shakes his head and turns back to the window. My patience is gone. It's been gone since I left the room. I narrow my eyes at him and lean forward, taking his cup out of his hands and placing it on the floor below us.
I reach around Cloud's waist with one hand and pull him down so he is lying on his back below me. I support myself on my elbows, hovering above him; I am getting answers this time.
"Cloud..." I begin; lacing my fingers through his hair so he can't look away. "You have been acting strange."
"There is definitely something wrong." I interrupt. "I want to know what it is...so I can help fix it." Cloud tries to turn his head away, but I don't loosen my hold on him. "What's wrong Cloud? What's bothering you?"
Unable to look away, Cloud closes his eyes and shakes his head. I struggle to keep my expression gentle. "I can't read you like you're able to read me. I won't know what's wrong unless you tell me, and unless I know, nothing will change. I know you haven't been sleeping, and that means something is wrong. Did I do something?"
"No!" Cloud opens his eyes and wraps his arms around my waist, pulling me flush against him. "No, you didn't do anything wrong, Leon. Don't think that."
"Then what's bothering you Cloud?"
"I..." His eyes close again, but I catch the pain behind them before they do.
"Cloud." He opens his eyes to look into mine, and I lean forward to press a gentle kiss to his lips. I release his hair and slide my hands down his body, pushing the blanket around him away so I can relieve him of the pajama bottoms he has on.
"L-Leon..." Cloud gasps as I begin to nibble on the very sensitive skin on his neck. "Not...not here in the window seat..."
"Are you afraid of someone seeing us?" I ask, not bothering to look up from my ministrations. I tease one of his nipples with my tongue, and the only reply I receive is a low groan. I run my tongue down his chest to his abdomen as I move back to slowly pull off the soft garment covering his hips.
"Leon." I hear Cloud begin. "If we do this here-"
I don't let him finish. I move back up his body and cut off his protestations with a firm kiss, urging him to open to me. He does so slightly hesitantly, and I am sure he must be completely confused as to what is going on, after all, I have never done anything like this before. My hands travel along the well-defined contours of his body, and he reaches to pull off my own clothing. His hands are warm against my flesh as he slides the plain white tee-shirt up over my head with a practiced skill developed over the years of us being together. He shifts his weight, no doubt trying to roll us over and take control as is normally expected of him, but I press back against him to let him know he isn't going anywhere. He relaxes, albeit hesitantly, and I know this won't be the last time he attempts to wrest control from me. The very thought brings a heat through me that threatens to undo me right there. I reach for the oil on the floor, giving Cloud one more lingering kiss before pulling away and pouring a little oil in my hands, warming it. Cloud reaches for me to try and remove the rest of my clothing, but I push his hands away gently. This is still my turn.
I rub the oil in my hands briefly before gently massaging it onto Cloud's skin. He releases a breath and his eyes drift closed as I soothe away tension that I am surprised to discover there. I'm no masseur, I admit, but Cloud arches into my touch like a cat that wants to be petted in a particular spot, so I must be doing something right. I continue to rub him down with the oil till his body is gleaming in the soft lighting of the living room, and there is no trace of tension in his muscles whatsoever.
"Leon...that was really wonder-AH!"
Cloud's praise is cut short as I take his erection into my mouth and swirl my tongue around the tip. His cry turns into a deep moan as I take him fully into my mouth and settle into a slow rhythm. His hands find my head, and he rubs his fingers against my scalp, but he doesn't grip my hair or force my head into a faster rhythm. When I pick up the pace he writhes below me. This I have done for him before, but not what I am thinking of doing next. As I continue to suckle him, I press a well oiled finger at his entrance and I can feel his control slip away like an adolescent boy on his first time. He throws his head back, crying out my name and I want more then anything to see his face. He cums into my mouth and I am more then prepared. I swallow everything he gives me, allowing him to ride the wave of pleasure he is on as long as possible. When he is finished I pull back and slide back up his body, soothing away the aftershocks with my tongue. Cloud looks at me with lazy-lidded eyes and he reaches for me again... and again I push his hands away. His eyebrows knit together slightly in confusion, and I stand to quickly pull my pajama bottoms off, tossing them aside to join Cloud's on the floor.
I silence him with a rough kiss, allowing him a taste of himself as I work my fingers inside him again. His breath hitches and he again tries to roll us over, but I press him back forcefully against the cushion in the window seat and push a second finger to join the first. It's pretty tight in there, and without waiting for him to fully adjust, I insert a third finger and reach for the bottle of oil again, pulling the top off as I continued to kiss him breathlessly. When he pushes against my hand I withdraw them immediately, smiling at the small, helplessly disappointed moan my blonde lover gives me. This is a sound I have never heard...a sound I find I like...
I grab one of his wrists with one hand and pour oil into his palm with the other. He looks at me questioningly, and I guide his hand to my crotch. He gets the idea quickly and rubs the oil over my shaft, giving it a squeeze that drags a groan from my throat. He smirks at me and continues, and I pull his hand away before I succumb to his teasing.
"That's enough of that." I growl at him. Cloud only chortles at me.
"Is it my turn now?"
"Are you ready to tell me what's wrong?"
Again a shadow falls over his eyes, but I caught a flicker of what I am sure is fear in those sapphire depths. Why is he so afraid? "Cloud?" He tenses beneath me. No. Oh no, not after I worked so hard to loosen him up. I shift my weight and settle between his thighs, pressing my lips to his and swallowing his gasp of surprise. He is not getting away from me, I deserve answers, and I will get them no matter what it is I have to do.
"Shut. Up." I command, my voice calm. "The only thing I want to hear is what's wrong." I push my hips up, impaling him slowly, and his eyes drift closed as he moans my name out in a voice that is little more then a whisper. "You..." I pant, thrusting in a slow rhythm that causes him to grip at the cushion, "know everything about me, but I..." Cloud's legs wrap around me and he meets my thrusts, causing me to trail off and forget what I was going to say. He coaxes me into a faster rhythm; his hands caress my back as they travel down to my ass and he squeezes firmly, breaking my sad excuse for control. I growl low in my throat and pound into him, taking his newfound erection into my hand and pumping him quickly, and mercilessly. Cloud trembles at my touch, at my thrusts, and he soon cums all over my stomach. A second later it's my turn, and I spill my seed inside him as he spasms around me. Cloud's arms tighten around me and he hugs me to him like a child as he hugs his favorite toy in the middle of the night.
"I... don't know everything."
His voice is wistful, full of a painful longing that causes me to stop and look into his eyes. However, the look of contentedness is back, and I snap.
"Don't look at me like that!" I grip his face with my hands. "I'm so sick of it, that look of yours like nothing is wrong, and I fully know that something is! Damn it, Cloud, stop treating me like an idiot!"
Cloud's eyes widen in shock and he tries to shrink away, but there's nowhere he can go, not pinned beneath me like he is. I can feel his heart beating wildly, and when I stare deep enough I can see the panic in his eyes, like his world is ending before his eyes, and he doesn't know what to do. At that look in his oh-so-blue eyes...I feel the exact same way.
...I don't know everything...
No. Of course not. No one can know everything about the other person, it's impossible, even for someone as observant as Cloud. Realization suddenly dawns on me, and the day's events flash through my mind.
This morning after breakfast. The shower incident. Him taking me to that quiet street he said he wanted to live. The restaurant. The two of us wrestling over my camera. The ferry.
I realize now that he had been trying to get a response out of me. He was trying to see how I felt about him. He knew I had trouble expressing myself, and so he never said anything about it directly. Instead, he just watched and waited for me to say or do anything that would answer his questions... only nothing ever came of it.
Nothing that he understood, anyway. It seemed that Cloud's gift is the thing that is causing us all the problems we are having now. That and my unwillingness to properly communicate with him. This can't go on. Cloud is doing his best to make this work, and it is time I at least meet him halfway.
The two of us had been staring at each other while I was figuring all this out. Cloud looks like he wants to speak, but is unable to. His eyes are brimming with tears, and when they fall, unbidden, I kiss them away.
"Hush. I'm not finished." I tell him softly. I loosen my grip on his face, burying my hands in his still-damp hair. "I don't...I don't like it when you don't tell me the things that bother you. I realize I'm not the best person to talk to, but..." I take a breath, not exactly sure of what I am doing, much less what I am saying. Cloud's eyes gaze into mine, and I get that sensation of drowning again. I don't look away this time; instead I hold the gaze, desperately trying to think of what I want to say.
Shit, I'm not good at this, I never have been. I take another second or two, thinking about what I want to say, why I take pictures of him all the time, why I can't hold his gaze and why I made love to him like I just did. I want to tell him how much he means to me, that I would love to buy one of those houses to live in with him, eat lunch with him in that strange little restaurant again. The words, however, just won't come. Cloud runs his fingers through my hair soothingly.
"It's fine, Leon. I understand."
No. No he doesn't. If he did he'd kiss me. If he did he'd smile. If he did, he would stop looking at me like that. He doesn't understand; but by all the gods I will find a way to make him. I will find a way to tell him how I feel, that he is everything to me.
I shower his face and neck with kisses as gentle as a butterflies wings, and he trembles beneath me again and I nip his ear gently. "Do you have any idea how much you mean to me?" I breathe softly in his ear. I feel his body clench beneath mine, and I continue, even though it's not easy to say. "You...are...my everything..." I say, stumbling through the words. "...And I... I love you. Do you know that?"
Cloud's arms tighten around me, it feels like he is trying to somehow merge our bodies together. I feel him nod furiously into my shoulder, and I hear him struggle to control his tears.
"Yes." He says quietly between sobs. "I do now." He takes a breath, and I pull back to look into his eyes. The shadow is gone, and his dazed, wet eyes are full of an expression that almost causes me to cry along with him.
Happiness. Relief. I can see in his eyes what he is about to say before he even says it.
"I love you, too."
Then he smiles at me. A real smile.
And what can I do but smile back?
Author's Nonsense: Well, here we are. I wanted to do a story where Leon admitted his feelings before Cloud did. I don't know why. Ah well.
Did you enjoy the beautiful imagery? The gentle mood? My attempt at a theme? I hope so. I hope you also enjoyed the lemon. It's my second ever! (I suppose you know that, though.)
I for one am happy that this is over and done with, I couldn't concentrate on anything until it was done! I'm even thinking of a follow up, but no promises. I guess it all depends on the feedback I get, as well as if I want Leon and Cloud to own my soul again.
Leon: Whatever. You just like to complain, you big baby.
Cloud: Well, it did make a nice potholder...
Not much else to babble on about. This is my first one-shot! Thanks for reading this crappy thing, I hope you enjoyed it! Okay, I have nothing else to say, so I guess I'll go now.